What is Tantra?


Tantra - "Touch That Reaches The Soul Through The Skin"

I decided to write about my first Tantra massage I received about a year ago. Before publishing it as a blog I gave it to a couple of friends to read for feedback. They pointed out that they didn't know anything about Tantra and suggested I give some background information about Tantra and Tantric sex as many people only have a vague idea about what it is all about. The Kama Sutra or images of Indian Temples with erotic carvings and Tantric sexual poses come to mind for many people when they hear the word Tantra. 

I, for one, didn't know much about it myself, and am just now learning more about it as I am working on Trip To Bliss. And reading about it, as it is with anything else, is really no substitute for discovering it for myself in a real life experience, as I realized when I went for a Tantra massage last year …

o I looked up definitions for Tantra and was somewhat perplexed to find that none of the many definitions ever mention anything to do with sexuality. Out of the many different ideas and definitions for “Tantra” this one, for me, was the easiest to understand and relate to:

“If we investigate the original Sanskrit sources we find an inclusive general definition of Tantra. Tantrik scholar and guru named Rāma Kaṇṭha, who lived around 950-1000 ce (“Common Era”, a synonym for “AD”), says tantra is:

A Tantra is a divinely revealed body of teachings, explaining what is necessary and what is a hindrance in the practice of the worship of the Divine; and also describing the specialized initiation and purification ceremonies that are the necessary prerequisites of Tantrik practice. These teachings are given to those qualified to pursue both the higher and lower aims of human existence.

This “definition is important as the only known indigenous attempt to define the Tantra.”

“My definition of nondual Śaiva Tantra is: 

spiritual movement originating in northern India that reached its peak in in the 9th – 12th centuries, primarily characterized by:
Emphasis on direct experience of a divine reality that has transcendent and immanent aspects, called Śiva and Śakti respectively, with Śiva primarily understood as the ultimate ground of being, and Śakti as the energy making up the entire manifest universe.
Initiation into a guru-disciple relationship and an egalitarian kula (spiritual community).
gnostic teachings combined with a ritual and/or yogic practice utilizing mantras, meditation, breath regulation and energy-body practices, as well as the aesthetic cultivation of the senses, aimed at accessing and assimilating the divine energy in all things, in order to achieve power, pleasures, and liberation.”                                                                                                     
Christopher Hareesh Wallis, Founding Faculty of Mattamayura Institute
Yet, when I look up Tantric Sex, Sacred Sexuality and other terms related to Tantra as related to sex and sexuality I find many wonderful definitions about the practices of Tantra.

“Tantra is a philosophy that contains an enormous Love and respect for all living things, including respecting the sensual and sexual nature of human life. The body is the temple of our souls, and our sexual energy is the strongest and most original source of vitality, creativity and strength that we have. Tantra reintegrates our sexuality with our heart and spirituality, enriching our ability to Love our partners, our families, our communities, and ourselves.”

Tantric practices teach you how to connect your sexuality to your heart and consciousness (spirituality). You will become a more masterful lover as you learn to be more present and connect more deeply with yourself and others. You may also learn to increase arousal, prolong lovemaking, heighten pleasure, expand your awareness of bliss/ecstasy and experience whole body multiple orgasms. Men may learn to experience stronger erections, ejaculatory control and orgasm without ejaculation. Women may learn to experience longer, richer and multiple orgasms and open to female ejaculation (amrita).
Lourdes Starshower, Tantra Healer
          http://www.tantrahealerflorida.com/
                                          ***

Sacred sexuality allows you to deepen pleasure, expand orgasms, and broaden your ideas of pleasuring beyond intercourse. It also deepens the purpose of lovemaking beyond bodily connection to include joining emotionally and spiritually with your partner. With a willingness to bring your higher self (heart and soul) to the sharing of your emotions and body, you reach new levels of Divine Presence."  Michael Mirdad, author of An Introduction to Tantra and Sacred Sexuality.

 I didn’t know any of this when I set out to receive my first Tantra massage. Why did I even venture there? On a trip to Germany last year a friend introduced me to a woman who was interested in sharing her story for Trip To Bliss. During out first meeting she told me her life story and so passionately recounted her experience with Tantra massage that I was curious. In her story she recounts her first experience with Tantra massage: 

He had already prepared everything, towels and warm oil, feather boa and candles, as he had gotten ready for me. How nice to be awaited for your own orgasm! …
I have never felt more feminine and full of lust, never more alive and complete, never freer and more secure. … I could not have counted the orgasms. They melted into each other and didn’t stop. It felt warm and feminine and strong and horny and pleasurable, and more. … When I left from there, I could feel the waves of orgasm still in me for days afterwards, between my legs, and I felt so indescribably feminine. …

Tabea, Germany

I was intrigued, and she urged me to give it a try for myself. I wasn’t sure but she quickly contacted him and set it all up. I will share my own experience in the next blog …

What I have learned since then:
Tantra massage is a unique experience and every practitioner has a different style of practice because of their own background and training. It’s a good idea to ask some questions and get to know your practitioner before choosing one. Tantric practices usually offer 1-on-1 experiences, which could include a Tantra massage, Tantric coaching and sexual healing. This will be different for men and women. Many offer couples Tantra session as well. 

Here are some testimonials from people about learning and practicing Tantra and Sacred Sexuality :

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“Transforming! A wonderful, joyous, empowering training which brought about deep healing and at times challenging experiences. to develop a healthy relationship with my sexuality and finding peace in my body. This helped in my process of knowing myself, accepting and loving myself and others more fully."

                 * * *
"Tantra has helped me in ways I had never imagined, when I started out.  I have more 'self understanding' and have been able to grow as a person."
                 * * *
"Tantra Massage provides a vehicle for addressing the total needs of the female body, it has it’s own rhythm and purpose. The experience has opened my eyes and my body to a new level of being and I will forever be changed by the experience."

  • Diary of a Tantra Massage – An Actual Account from a Woman’s Perspective

I will tell you about my first Tantra massage in my next blog. 

Do you have any experience with Tantra and Sacred Sexuality? What did you discover for yourself?